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Nano Cancer

Harshika Jain , Charan Kumar

ECE, Mahaveer Institute of Science and Technology , JNTU

Vyasapuri,Bandlaguda,Hyderabad .
Nanotechnology is being applied to cancer in two broad
In this new era , technology is playing important role in
areas: the development of nanovectors, such as nanoparticles,
overall development of human being .One such
which can be loaded with drugs or imaging agents and then
technology is nano technology which has its own impact
targeted to tumours, and high-throughput nanosensor devices
in treating dreadful diseases such as cancer. Our paper
for detecting the biological signatures of cancer. Combined,
shows how nano technology could form the basis of an
such technologies could lead to earlier diagnosis and better
inexpensive and non-invasive diagnostic tool for cancer. It
treatment for patients with cancer.
is here that nanotechnology can play a pivotal role,
providing the technological power and tools that will
Nanotechnology has been used to create new and improved
enable those developing new diagnostics, therapeutics,
imaging techniques to find small tumors. Researchers have
and preventives to keep pace with today’s explosion in
shown that incredibly small iron oxide particles
knowledge. The concept of nanoscale devices has led to
(nanoparticulates) can be used with magnetic resonance
the development of biodegradable self-assembled
imaging (MRI) to accurately detect cancers that have spread
nanoparticles, which are being engineered for the
to lymph nodes, without requiring surgery. Through the
targeted delivery of anticancer drugs and imaging
concerted development of nanoscale devices or devices with
contrast agents.
nanoscale materials and components, the NCI Alliance for
Nanotechnology in Cancer will facilitate their integration
Nanotechnology provides the sized materials that can be
within the existing cancer research infrastructure. The
synthesized and function in the same general size range
Alliance will bring enabling technologies for:
and Biologic structures. Attempts are made to develop
forms of anticancer therapeutics based on nanomaterials.  Novel methods to manage the symptoms of cancer
Dendritic polymer nanodevices serves as a means for the that adversely impact quality of life .
detection of cancer cells, the identification of cancer
signatures, and the targeted delivery of anti-cancer  Research tools that will enable rapid identification

therapeutics (cis-platin, taxol) and contrast agents to of new targets for clinical development and predict

tumor cells.This work demonstrates the modern drug resistance.

development of nano cancer which gives a new hope of

 The latest study was based on the theory that
life to cancer patients.
prostate cancer could be a suitable target for a risk-
reduction approach because of its high prevalence
and significant morbidity and mortality.

Cancer is a term used for diseases in which abnormal cells

divide without control and are able to invade other tissues.
Cancer cells can spread to other parts of the body through the
blood and lymph systems.

How is cancer treated?

All cancers begin in cells, the body's basic unit of life. To
Cancer treatment depends on the type of cancer, the stage of
understand cancer, it's helpful to know what happens when
the cancer (how much it has spread), age, health status, and
normal cells become cancer cells.
additional personal characteristics. There is no single

The body is made up of many types of cells. These cells grow treatment for cancer, and patients often receive a combination

and divide in a controlled way to produce more cells as they of therapies and palliative care. Treatments usually fall into

are needed to keep the body healthy. When cells become old one of the following categories: surgery, radiation,

or damaged, they die and are replaced with new cells. chemotherapy, immunotherapy, hormone therapy, or gene
However, sometimes this orderly process goes wrong. The
genetic material (DNA) of a cell can become damaged or Surgery
changed, producing mutations that affect normal cell growth
and division. When this happens, cells do not die when they Surgery is the oldest known treatment for cancer. If a cancer

should and new cells form when the body does not need has not metastasized, it is possible to completely cure a

them. The extra cells may form a mass of tissue called a patient by surgically removing the cancer from the body.

tumor. This is often seen in the removal of the prostate or a breast or

testicle. After the disease has spread, however, it is nearly
impossible to remove all of the cancer cells. Surgery may
also be instrumental in helping to control symptoms such as
bowel obstruction or spinal cord compression.
Radiation Why Nanotechnology for cancer

Nanotechnology, broadly defined as the engineering of

devices on the scale of tens to a couple-hundred nanometers
(nm), holds promise for cancer detection and therapy for two
main reasons: size and function. Nanoscale devices, often
referred to as nanoparticles, are small enough to travel
Radiation treatment, also known as radiotherapy, destroys through the bloodstream and gain access to tumors. The
cancer by focusing high-energy rays on the cancer cells. This devices can be designed to specifically target and enter tumor
causes damage to the molecules that make up the cancer cells cells. Once inside, they can deliver any number of payloads,
and leads them to commit suicide. Radiotherapy utilizes from agents that improve cancer detection to treatments such
high-energy gamma-rays that are emitted from metals such as as drugs or genes.
radium or high-energy x-rays that are created in a special
machine. Early radiation treatments caused severe side- Nanoscale devices are somewhere from one hundred to ten

effects because the energy beams would damage normal, thousand times smaller than human cells. They are similar in

healthy tissue, but technologies have improved so that beams size to large biological molecules ("biomolecules") such as

can be more accurately targeted. Radiotherapy is used as a enzymes and receptors. As an example, hemoglobin, the

standalone treatment to shrink a tumor or destroy cancer cells molecule that carries oxygen in red blood cells, is

(including those associated with leukemia and lymphoma), approximately 5 nanometers in diameter. Nanoscale devices

and it is also used in combination with other cancer smaller than 50 nanometers can easily enter most cells, while

treatments. those smaller than 20 nanometers can move out of blood

vessels as they circulate through the body.
Gene therapy
Because of their small size, nanoscale devices can readily

The goal of gene therapy is to replace damaged genes with interact with biomolecules on both the surface of cells and

ones that work to address a root cause of cancer: damage to inside of cells. By gaining access to so many areas of the

DNA. For example, researchers are trying to replace the body, biological they have the potential to detect disease and

damaged gene that signals cells to stop dividing with a copy deliver treatment in ways unimagined before now. And since

of a working gene. Other gene-based therapies focus on processes, including events that lead to cancer, occur at the

further damaging cancer cell DNA to the point where the cell nanoscale at and inside cells, nanotechnology offers a wealth

commits suicide. Gene therapy is a very young field and has of tools that are providing cancer researchers with new and

not yet resulted in any successful treatments. innovative ways to diagnose and treat cancer.
Nanodevices Are Small Enough to Enter Cells :

Most animal cells are 10,000 to 20,000 nanometers in

diameter. This means that nanoscale devices (less than 100
nanometers) can enter cells and the organelles inside them to
interact with DNA and proteins. Tools developed through
nanotechnology may be able to detect disease in a very small
amount of cells or tissue. They may also be able to enter and
monitor cells within a living body.

Nano-shells in cancer treatment:

Metal nanoshells are a class of nanoparticles with tunable

optical resonances. In this article, an application of this
technology to thermal ablative therapy for cancer is
described. By tuning the nanoshells to strongly absorb light
in the near infrared, where optical transmission through tissue
is optimal, a distribution of nanoshells at depth in tissue can
be used to deliver a therapeutic dose of heat by using
Nanodevices as a Link Between Detection, moderately low exposures of extracorporeally applied near-
Diagnosis, and Treatment : infrared (NIR) light. Cells without nanoshells displayed no
loss in viability after the same periods and conditions of NIR
Researchers aim eventually to create nanodevices that do
illumination. Likewise, in vivo studies under magnetic
much more than deliver treatment. The goal is to create a
resonance guidance revealed that exposure to low doses of
single nanodevice that will do many things: assist in imaging
NIR light (820 nm, 4 W/cm 2) in solid tumors treated with
inside the body, recognize precancerous or cancerous cells,
metal nanoshells reached average maximum temperatures
release a drug that targets only those cells, and report back on
capable of inducing irreversible tissue damage (ΔT = 37.4 ±
the effectiveness of the treatment.
6.6°C) within 4-6 min. Controls treated without nanoshells
demonstrated significantly lower average temperatures on
exposure to NIR light (ΔT < 10°C). These findings
demonstrated good correlation with histological findings. by the light-absorbing nanoshells has successfully killed
Tissues heated above the thermal damage threshold displayed tumor cells while leaving neighboring cells intact.
coagulation, cell shrinkage, and loss of nuclear staining,
which are indicators of irreversible thermal damage. Control
tissues appeared undamaged.

Nanoshells are miniscule beads coated with gold. By

manipulating the thickness of the layers making up the
nanoshells, scientists can design these beads to absorb
specific wavelengths of light. The most useful nanoshells are
those that absorb near-infrared light, which can easily
penetrate several centimeters of human tissue. The absorption
of light by the nanoshells creates an intense heat that is lethal
to cells.

Nanotechnology may come to the rescue of cancer patients,

as new research using nano particles has succeeded in killing
tumors in mice. The particles, called nanoshells, reveal the
location of tumors and then destroy them in a burst of heat. Dendrimers:

Blood vessels surrounding tumors are leakier than those in

Research is being done on a number of nanoparticles created
healthy tissue, so the gold plated glass nano shells injected
to facilitate drug delivery. One such molecule with potential
into the bloodstream tend to accumulate at tumor sites. These
to link treatment with detection and diagnosis is known as a
particles 'glow' when subjected to low intensity infra-red
dendrimer. Dendrimers are man-made molecules about the
radiation, which allows the tumor area to be found by
size of an average protein, and have a branching shape. This
something called 'optical coherence tomography'. This
shape gives them vast amounts of surface area to which
involves shining low power, infrared light onto the tissue and
scientists can attach therapeutic agents or other biologically
then measuring where the scattered light bounces back from
active molecules. Researchers aim eventually to create
the nanoparticles. Then a higher-power infrared laser is
nanodevices that do much more than deliver treatment.
applied to each tumor site for 3 minutes to heat the tissue.

Researchers can already link nanoshells to antibodies that

recognize cancer cells. Scientists envision letting these single dendrimer can carry a molecule that recognizes cancer
nanoshells seek out their cancerous targets, then applying cells, a therapeutic agent to kill those cells, and a molecule
near-infrared light. In laboratory cultures, the heat generated that recognizes the signals of cell death. Researchers hope to
manipulate dendrimers to release their contents only in the
presence of certain trigger molecules associated with cancer. biophysical and biomedical barriers that the body stages
Following drug release, the dendrimers may also report back against a standard intervention such as the administration of
whether they are successfully killing their targets. drugs or contrast agents.

Could nanoparticles provide promising cancer


Perhaps the biggest challenge in cancer treatment is the issue

of selectivity – how to kill cancer cells while leaving healthy
cells unharmed. But many commonly used chemotherapy
drugs aren’t especially selective.

As a result, patients can experience unpleasant and

distressing side effects, including hair loss, sickness,
tiredness and susceptibility to infections.
Nano –particles:
Modern ‘targeted’ treatments, such as herceptin and tarceva
Nanoscale devices have the potential to radically change
are designed to lock on to particular molecules found on the
cancer therapy for the better and to dramatically increase the
surface of cancer cells, increasing their selectivity. But the
number of highly effective therapeutic agents. In this
Holy Grail of cancer research – a treatment that exclusively
example, nanoparticles are targeted to cancer cells for use in
attacks cancer cells spread throughout the body, whilst
the molecular imaging of a malignant lesion. Large numbers
leaving the rest of our cells unharmed - is still tantalisingly
of nanoparticles are safely injected into the body and
out of our grasp.
preferentially bind to the cancer cell, defining the anatomical
contour of the lesion and making it visible. Scientists have just taken us a step closer to this goal, with
their research into a nanotechnology-based treatment that
These nanoparticles give us the ability to see cells and
appears to specifically target cancer cells.
molecules that we otherwise cannot detect through
conventional imaging. The ability to pick up what happens in Nanoparticles for cancer therapy at the London School of
the cell — to monitor therapeutic intervention and to see Pharmacy scientists have been investigating curious chain-
when a cancer cell is mortally wounded or is actually like molecules called dendrimers for several years. When
activated — is critical to the successful diagnosis and dendrimers are mixed with DNA molecules or cancer drugs,
treatment of the disease. they form microscopic balls called ‘nanoparticles’ - you
could fit tens to hundreds of these on the head of a pin.
Nanoparticulate technology can prove to be very
useful in cancer therapy allowing for effective and targeted
drug delivery by overcoming the many biological,
For reasons that no-one yet understands, these nanoparticles The researchers found that the activity of their reporter gene
are highly attracted to tumour– possibly due to the unusual accurately highlighted tumours spread throughout the body,
nature of the blood vessels that fuel cancers. They also have a showing that the nanoparticles had reached their target. They
tendency to build up in tumours, making them ideal also discovered that gene activity reached a peak 24 hours
candidates for smuggling substances into cancer cells. after injection, then faded away – important information
when it comes to designing clinical trials to test the treatment
Similar nanoparticles containing cancer drugs such as in humans.
paclitaxel (Taxol) are already being tested in clinical trials,
but Schatzlein and his colleagues are particularly interested Crucially, the scientists didn’t see a significant build-up of
in using them for gene therapy – transporting specific genes radioactive iodine in the liver, kidney or lungs. Again, this is
into cancer cells, causing them to make toxic proteins that important, because other chemicals used to deliver gene
can kill the cells whilst leaving the surrounding tissue therapy have a strong tendency to collect in these organs,
unharmed. causing side effects.

Recent Researches:
Where do they go?
In their latest paper the researchers have gone a step further, Nanotechnology has already demonstrated promising results

using a clever technique to investigate how the nanoparticles in cancer research and treatment. A release from NCI notes

target their deadly payload to cancers that have spread around some recent advances in cancer treatment involving

the body nanotechnology:

To do this, the scientists injected nanoparticles carrying a so- Recent researches neatly prove that – in principle at least – it

called “reporter” gene into mice with cancer that had spread, is possible to deliver gene therapy to tumours throughout the

allowing them to track where the particles ended up. body, and ‘see’ it at work. Future treatments based on this

Specifically, they used a gene carrying instructions for a technology would ideally use nanoparticles that combined a

protein that pumps the chemical iodine into cells. tumour-killing gene with the iodine reporter gene.

The idea is that the cancer cells take up the nanoparticles, and  The latest research is the result of ongoing
start producing the iodine-pumping protein. Then the collaborative work between the Prostate Cancer
scientists give tiny, harmless doses of radioactive iodine to Research and Educational Foundation (PC-REF)
the mice, which get taken up by only those cancer cells and Baltimore-based MedInsight Research Institute.
where the iodine-shuttling gene has been activated. Finally, Their previous work has shown that noscapine has
using CT scanning (which detects radioactive molecules), it’s properties that limit the growth of prostate cancer.
possible to build up an impressively detailed picture of the  The latest study was based on the theory that
location of the tumours throughout the bodies of the mice. prostate cancer could be a suitable target for a risk-
reduction approach because of its high prevalence
and significant morbidity and mortality.
 Noscapine has been used worldwide since the 1950s
as an ingredient in over-the-counter cough
medicines and was originally suggested as an anti-
cancer agent in the early
 1960s. But major studies of its anti-cancer properties
have only taken place in recent years.
 Nanoscale drug delivery devices are being
developed to deliver anticancer therapeutics
specifically to tumors. Liposomes are one such "first
generation" nanoscale device. Liposomal
doxorubicin is used to treat specific forms of cancer,
while liposomal amphotericin B treats fungal Today drug delivery technologies are patent protected

infections often associated with aggressive formulation technologies that modify drug release profile,

anticancer treatment. Recently, a nanoparticulate absorption, distribution and elimination for the benefit of

formulation of the well-known anticancer compound improving product efficacy and safety, as well as patient

taxol was submitted as a new treatment for advanced convenience and compliance.

stage breast cancer. Many medications such as peptide and protein, antibody,
vaccine and gene based drugs, in general may not be

Nanomedical capsule in cancer treatment: delivered using these routes because they might be
susceptible to enzymatic degradation or can not be absorbed
Nanobotmodels Company creates model of à drug into the systemic circulation efficiently due to molecular size
delivery nanocapsule, which can be used to cancer and charge issues to be therapeutically effective. For this
treatment. Nanotechnology and nanorobotics reason many protein and peptide drugs have to be delivered
development can boost and radically change modern by injection. For example, many immunizations are based on
drug delivery methods. This is our vision of cancer- the delivery of protein drugs and are often done by injection.
treatment in the next decade.
Targeted drug delivery is a method of delivering medication
to a patient in a manner that increases the concentration of
the medication in some parts of the body relative to others.

In traditional drug delivery systems such as oral ingestion or

intravascular injection, the medication is distributed
throughout the body through the systemic blood circulation.
For most therapeutic agents, only a small portion of the of malignancy needed to better diagnose, treat, and
medication reaches the organ to be affected. Targeted drug ultimately prevent cancer.
delivery seeks to concentrate the medication in the tissues of
interest while reducing the relative concentration of the
medication in the remaining tissues. This improves efficacy
of the while reducing side effects.
• Nanotechnologies that will aid in cancer care are in
The idea of using nanorobots or nanocapsule to deliver drugs various stages of discovery and development.
and fight diseases such as cancers is not new. But there are Experts believe that quantum dots, nanopores, and
still lots of issues to solve before nanocapsule can diagnose other devices for detection and diagnosis may be
our diseases and treat them. available for clinical use in 5 to 15 years.
Therapeutic agents are expected to be available
When nanocapsule injected in cancer tissues, it protein within a similar time frame. Devices that integrate
binding sites attract cancer markers on the surface of cancer detection and therapy could be used clinically in
cells. Proteins, acting as binding sites, change electric about 15 or 20 years.
properties of nanocapsule injection port. Then nanocapsule
CPU can activate injection mechanism to delivery agent,
which cause apoptosis of the cell.

This model, made by Nanobotmodels Company, demonstrate

all main parts of mechanical capsule - injection ports, binding
sites, injector needle. Model made on the base of various
researches on the drug delivery and nanomedicine field.


Nanodevices can provide rapid and sensitive detection of

cancer-related molecules byenabling scientists to detect
molecular changes even when they occur only in a small
percentage of cells. Nanotechnology is providing a
critical bridge between the physical sciences and engineering,
on the one hand, and modern molecular biology on the other.

• engineers are creating a host of nanoscale tools that

are required to develop the systems biology models

[1] National Cancer Institute.

[2]U.S National Institutes Of Health.

www.cancer .gov